How could an ANC president be so rotten?

2017-11-19 05:58
Matthews Phosa (Netwerk24)

Matthews Phosa (Netwerk24)

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Enemy of the People: Adriaan Basson and Pieter du Toit discuss Zuma's 'disastrous' presidency

2017-11-17 17:55

News24 Politics editor, Mahlatse Mahlase, sat down with Adriaan Basson and Pieter du Toit to discuss their book Enemy of the People: How Jacob Zuma stole South Africa and how the people fought back.WATCH

“Everyone here must have grey hair or they have put on dye,” said ANC presidential hopeful Mathews Phosa at the start of the ANC veterans and stalwarts consultative conference in Braamfontein yesterday.

Among the old ANC members standing outside the big white marquee were Sidney Mufamadi, Trevor Fowler, Murphy Morobe, Anwa Dramat, Mavuso Msimang, Frank Chikane, Popo Molefe, Siphiwe Nyanda and Fazel Randera, just to name a few.

The three-day meeting, which ends today, did not have the blessing of President Jacob Zuma’s ANC administration. But nine former Cabinet ministers, 11 former ANC national executive committee members and 13 current executive members attended on Friday, including former president Thabo Mbeki. “We need to fix our country and the starting point is to fix the ANC,” Mufamadi said earlier in the underground parking area of the Constitutional Court precinct.

SA 'a tender state'

Once inside the marquee, the delegates sang about Oliver Tambo, Nelson Mandela and Walter Sisulu. The women ululated. Mbeki returned for the second day and took a seat in the front row.

Sam Nkosi of the South African National Civic Organisation told the delegates that the organisation was “worried about the perception that we are turning to be like baboons, where those who are getting old are rejected by the youth”.

He said the ANC under Zuma did not listen to the people.

Cosatu’s second deputy president, Zingiswa Losi, said the trade union federation, also an alliance partner of the ANC, wanted to reclaim, restore and unite the ANC.

But that was not before a person in the audience shouted: “Viva DSG viva,” referring to the lobby for Losi to become the next deputy secretary-general of the ANC under the slate punting Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa to take over from Zuma.

SA Communist Party first general-secretary Solly Mapaila said the party fully supported the stalwarts and veterans’ initiative. Then he took potshots at Zuma. Mapaila said “the instrument of the state has been hijacked and democratic state institutions are being destroyed on a daily basis and state owned entities looted and plunged into a deep crisis with the complicity of [Zuma]”.

“The state has been reduced into a tender state of the inner circle of [Zuma]”.

He said Zuma’s friends, the Guptas, had become a parallel state and the ANC and the alliance were undermined on a daily basis “not by anyone else but it’s own president”.

“How could an ANC president be so rotten to the core? It is unthinkable,” he said. The audience applauded. Mbeki tapped his hands on the file cover on his lap.

Mapaila said the SACP was sorry for playing a role in Zuma’s ascension to power, referring to the bruising Polokwane ANC conference in 2007 when Zuma defeated Mbeki. This time Mbeki seemed not to move a muscle.

Mufamadi said “discussing corruption and other ills in the ANC is practically a taboo”.

“That is why the leadership refused to embrace the consultative conference,” he said.

Read more on:    anc  |  jacob zuma  |  mathews phosa

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